The Reading Strategies Book

Your Everything Guide to Developing Skilled Readers

by Jennifer Serravallo

Number of pages: 400

Publisher: Heinemann

BBB Library: Personal Success

ISBN: 978-0325074337

About the Author

Jennifer Serravallo is the author of New York Times bestseller The Reading Strategies Book as well as other popular Heinemann titles, including Teaching Reading in Small Groups; Conferring with Readers; and The Literacy Teacher’s Playbook, Grades K–2 and Grades 3–6.


Editorial Review

Engaged readers are often motivated to read, strategic in their approaches to comprehending what they read, knowledgeable in their construction of meaning from text, and socially interactive while reading. Sometimes to help readers with the goal of engagement, you actually need to work on comprehension.

Book Reviews

“The book’s organization is incredible. There is an overview table at the start of each chapter to offer special guidelines so you can locate strategies based on the skill. Each strategy page addresses the population it helps, the genre/text type, the specific skill, ideas on how to teach it, along with prompts and charts.”— Middle Web

“Whether a teacher is working in a workshop instructional model, a guided reading/literacy center model, a basal reader/anthology model or a Daily 5 model, this book will fit very nicely into the instructional framework. For teachers stuck with a prescribed scope and sequence for instruction, this book will help the teacher meet the needs of those students who don’t fit neatly into a rigid instructional design.” — Russ on Reading

“The beauty of The Reading Strategies Book is in its simplicity, consistency, and organization. The 300 (!) strategies are broken up by goal, which mimic goals that we might have as teachers as we help students navigate various text types. These goals range from support for early readers to comprehending fiction in a variety of ways to improving comprehension of nonfiction to deepening students’ speaking and listening skills.” —Oakland Schools Literacy

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Wisdom to Share

Readers should be able to answer the question, “Who am I as a reader?”

By reading at an appropriate pace, with proper phrasing and with intonation, expression, and emphasis on the correct words, a reader both communicates that the text is making sense and makes sense of the reading.

Read up to the punctuation, take a short break, and then read the next group.

The place you pause within a sentence can change the meaning of that sentence.

When summarizing, remember to tell what’s important. Tell it in the order it happened. Tell it in a way that makes sense.

To summarize only the most important information, it’s helpful to stop and say, “What was this story really about?”

Each chapter will have at least one important event. At the end of the chapter, stop and jot about what the most important event is.

Pay attention to tenses. If the verbs switch from present to past tense, you know the time has changed.

Character development is often intertwined with plot development.

You can figure out what a character is feeling or learn about the kind of person a character is by relying on what you know about people in real life.

Think about a point of conflict in the story. Notice if the character acts differently before and after the conflict.

When we want to figure out a theme in a story, we can stop and jot an important note about what’s happening in the plot, and then we can infer by asking ourselves, “What’s the big idea about what’s happening in this story?”

To determine a story’s theme, it helps to first name some topics¬—one-word issues, ideas, or concepts.

We can uncover the real-world issues in the stories we’re reading and use what we read in books to think more deeply about our lives.

Writing about nonfiction will help you hold onto important information and ideas as you read.